l Art To Do List
l SD Contest 17: Cassidy
l Contests Listing
l Commissions Listing
Congrats on your win! Can you please tell us little bit about yourself? Anything you think people should know about you.
- Well, my name is Jose Manuel Martinez, Mexican, graduated with a major in logistics on 2010 and if everything goes well, with a master in marketing at the end of this year. I currently work on a freight transport carrier in customer service as a day job and to have some savings that could be useful later on.
As of things I enjoy besides drawing (more on that later), I like to watch not very well known anime series, read about the latest gadget news, get a good laugh from some Internet memes, learn about new cultures, flavors and places to visit (especially Western European and Japanese), and simply enjoy some of the simple things of life when possible.
Up to now, one of my biggest life changing experiences was three years ago, during a student exchange that allowed me to visit Europe for the first time ever, particularly northern France. Besides the usual new culture, way of life and European touring most people do while there, it allowed me to get a small glimpse on the amazing world of French comics, or BDs as they're known locally, which have a huge tradition, almost as big as American comics and Japanese manga, and get to know a couple of rare stories that are hardly known outside France. One of those stories actually became a source of inspiration in case I decide to venture further and make stories with the Friendsies.
It also allowed me to set better aspirations about the kind of life style I'd like to have, such as walking and taking public transport within an city instead of driving, and taking the train for longer trips, things that aren't easy to emulate in Mexico given the car-centric expectations and cities built around it. Finally, it was an exciting opportunity to meet some of the greatest people I've known so far, some of whom I still keep in touch to this date, especially someone who has a very special place on me and whom I'd like to meet again soon. Therefore, it was an experience I still miss a lot and that I look forward to repeat one day!
How long have you been a member of deviantART, and how did you find the site?
- I've been on deviantART since January 2005, when I stumbled across the site by chance while looking for some reference pictures and wallpapers, then decided to give the site a chance and join. But it was not until one year later when I actively started posting my very first digital drawings, which already featured the yet unnamed Friendsies, and haven't stopped since.
deviantART has practically been part of my life ever since my junior year of high school, then onwards to college, and now as a graduate student, and I hope it continues to be that way onto the forseeable future despite how hard it has been to be known around the site, and believe me it still is!
As of how I've found the whole dA experience, I can say I'm glad it has been a great medium to showcase my drawings to the world, even though their penetration hasn't been as high as I might have wanted. But that's OK, since I know the people who has been loyal to me is because they truly love what I do and besides, my schedule doesn't allow me to commit a huge amount of daily time to the site in addition to the drawings themselves.
What is your favorite medium to use for art?
- Digital art, particularly the flat color and cel shading technique, using Photoshop's vector tools and custom brushes to achieve most of my effects.
Some day I'd like to transition to make my drawings by tablet, like an iPad for example, but even though it has seen very good advances during all this time in the market, I believe it still doesn't offer any good tools to make it a perfect replacement for my current Photoshop method. This is because I use very heavy use of the tools I mentioned before that haven't been replicated in most of the currently available drawing apps. Your suggestions are welcome if you've tried some of them!
My main source of inspiration for the Friendsies, is a mixture of manga for some elements of my style, and pictures of children for fashion and the situations that come out on each drawing. Of course, for the latter I don't tend to follow neither what's hot right now nor everything you might expect to see a girl to wear. I only take what I enjoy the most and from there, decide what kind of clothes go with each particular girl to define their personal styles, while at the same time their actual traits and interests might differ from their looks.
Do you have any projects or goals that you are working toward as an artist?
- Currently, my schedule only allows me to keep drawing as a hobby, because I also have a day job, masters degree studies, as well as some social and family life, all of them completely unrelated to my art. So to fit with this tight schedule, I usually aspire to finish and publish one drawing a week, and do my best to make each of them tell a small story related to the girls on it. If you look carefully you'll notice it has been like this for a while. And believe me, sometimes it's truly a miracle that I still manage to find time to draw without neglecting anything else, sleeping included!
But for some time, I've always wanted to make some short stories with the Friendsies, so that you guys can get to know them even better. These stories would be centered on their daily life out of school, whether at home, close to it or even further afield as they learn every time more about each other while at the esame time do their best to be themselves and fight the usual expectations of how they, as girls, should look like, feel or behave.
If things go better, and especially after graduating from my MBA, I hope to be able to move away from my current job-centric lifestyle and start a drawing career while at the same time working on the stories I mentioned before. To be honest, even if my day job is well paid, related to my college studies, and with more future possibilities thanks to this upcoming MBA, I feel that my art is what truly identifies me the most as a person, and the first thing I'd love others to ask me about before anything else.
Any closing words you would like to share with the audience or anything you wish to advertise?
- Easy and simple: never, ever give up your dreams! Always do your best and fight for them; don't just give up because you believe it's impossible or even worse, because it's not what others wanted or expected from you. Give yourself a chance to discover if what you're pursuing works for you and only until then are you to decide whether to continue or to find something new if it's not what you wanted. It's never too late to get started into something you love and get known for it. You can apply this to every aspect of your life: studies, career, friends, family, love, you mention it.
Just look at my example: I graduated twice from one of Mexico's best colleges (three times when done with my MBA) and have a related job, and everyone from my parents to my extended family to my friends are happy with it. But despite that, what I really want to do is to give life to the Friendsies, so that more people get to know and learn from them, and thereafter think of and start new projects in order to keep this career prospect and skills alive.
About the student exchange experience I mentioned before, if you ever have the choice to take this opportunity while in college or later on, don't miss it! Yes, it might be expensive, you will leave your familiy and friends behind for a while, there will be a huge shock phase during your last weeks before leaving and first ones after arriving when you literally want to give up, among other fears and oddities. But everything you learn from it will give you a new perspective in life, and if you're for it this could change your live forever for the good. Just ask a girl who also went with me: she met the love of her life while there, returned home to graduate together with me, then went back to live with her boyfriend, and now after two years of living together, they just got married.
To you, `TouchedVenus
, thank you very much for this very unique opportunity I didn't expect to have this soon. This is the first time someone invites me to openly talk about my art without judging or moving on to a more "what you should be doing" tone, as some people outside dA have unfortunately done before; they believe there won't be any future out of this but sooner or later it will be time to prove them wrong.
Finally, I wish you all to enjoy everything what the Friendsies has offered and will continue to do so, that you give them a special place in your heart so you can learn more about how the see life, and that you're able to follow and live to your dreams to be truly self-fulfilled as a person. Feel free to ask more if interested, whether about myself or the girls, I'm glad to hear when someone is genuinely interested on us!
Journal skin by `TwiggyTeeluckImage